Mayor should stop trying to shift blame
Mayor Hannemann's comments regarding waste-water improvements and the 2000 mayoral election ("Mayor defends Ala Wai sewage dumping," Star-Bulletin, April 9
) were immature and irresponsible. Hannemann probably had few (if any) options in the Ala Wai Canal case, but the call was made on his watch by his administration, and therefore, responsibility rests with him alone.
Criticism comes with the mayor's job; shifting blame in response to criticism is petty and unbecoming to the mayor of Honolulu. President Truman's words still apply: "If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen."
City will have to pay for sewage's effects
The letter by Eric S. Takamura, the director of the Department of Environmental Services, could have just as easily gotten the point across by saying, "Sorry, I'm just trying to cover my own ass" ("Sewage procedure needs clarification," Letters, Star-Bulletin, April 9
). Save all those docket numbers and the procedure manual mumbo-jumbo for the courtroom when the City and County of Honolulu gets sued by thousands of people who are sickened or die because of this massive blunder.
As for the Department of Health, hey, it seems quite obvious that allowing anyone to swim in millions of gallons of human waste is just a very bad idea.
Democrats refuse to give back our money
Governor Lingle proposed good, solid, workable ways to return some of the state's revenue surplus to taxpayers. But -- as usual -- the Democrats in the Legislature refused to cooperate. Any hoped-for tax relief will not happen this legislative session.
How refreshing it would be if the Democrats would put the people before politics. In this election year, the people should put themselves first and vote to replace the do-nothing Democrats with Republicans who would support tax relief for those who need it most.
Ladies, watch out -- guys want your stalls
Ladies, beware. If House Bill 1233 SD 1
passes, males who perceive themselves to be women must be allowed to use women's showers or restrooms. The bill makes it illegal to discriminate in public accommodations based on "sexual orientation" and redefines and expands the meaning of male and female to include "gender identity or 'expression.'" The "expression" definition protects men who claim to be women or who intend to do so in the future.
Predatory males will be able to invade female spaces while claiming to be protected by law. In addition, because a male could proclaim such "expression," the bill might also be a sly way to circumvent the state's constitutional amendment that affirmed traditional marriage between one man and one woman. Voters who passed the amendment by nearly 70 percent should contact their state senators and representatives to express their disapproval of such onerous legislation.
Ethanol should be driven out of isles
Our state legislators still have time to undue yet another market-meddling mess that, if left as is, will quickly result in higher-than-necessary pump prices and lower miles per gallon for Hawaii drivers.
Soon most motor fuel sold in Hawaii must contain a significant percentage of ethanol. Our Legislature made this decision for ostensibly good reasons (sound like the gas cap, anyone?), but it's ready to backfire on all of us.
Turns out that not only does "gasohol" cut gas mileage, but an unanticipated worldwide shortage of ethanol looms. Furthermore, the Hawaii ethanol industry that was supposed to develop as a result of this mandate has been delayed -- for years. This means that in the meantime, Hawaii will need to import increasingly scarce ethanol. Four dollars per gallon could be here by mid-summer.
What can our Legislature do? It could undo the impending requirement that most motor fuel in Hawaii include a large proportion of ethanol. This should help ease Hawaii's fuel prices because scarce ethanol won't be needed.
At the very least, the state mandate for ethanol vehicular fuel content needs to be immediately delayed.